Paris agrees to turn Champs-Élysées into extraordinary garden
Mayor Anne Hidalgo gives green light to £225m-scheme to transform French capital’s most famous avenue.
The mayor of Paris has said a €250m (£225m) makeover of the Champs-Élysées will go ahead, though the ambitious transformation will not happen before the French capital hosts the 2024 Summer Olympics.
Anne Hidalgo said the planned work, unveiled in 2019 by local community leaders and businesses, would turn the 1.9 km (1.2 mile) stretch of central Paris into “an extraordinary garden”.
The Champs-Élysées committee has been campaigning for a major redesign of the avenue and its surroundings since 2018.
“The legendary avenue has lost its splendour during the last 30 years. It has been progressively abandoned by Parisians and has been hit by several successive crises: the gilets jaunes, strikes, health and economic,” the committee said in a statement welcoming Hidalgo’s announcement.
Before the Covid-19 crisis halted international tourism, the architect Philippe Chiambaretta, whose firm PCA-Stream drew up the makeover plans, said that of the estimated 100,000 pedestrians on the avenue every day, 72% were tourists and 22% work there...